Randal M. Shaheen

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Instead of Shining a Light on Dark Patterns, New FTC Report Leaves Many Questions Unanswered

For some time now, dark patterns have been quite the trending topic for both marketers and privacy professionals. Regulators have frequently railed against dark patterns that purport to manipulate user choices, usually through manipulative user interfaces. A bipartisan group of lawmakers introduced legislation called the DETOUR Act that would ban dark patterns. And outside this … Continue Reading

Bamboozling Part II: The FTC Brings Back Retro Penalty Offense Letters like Bell Bottoms and Big Hair

What do bamboo fabric and green claims have to do with toys, weight loss, car rentals and fur coats? Sounds like the start of a Dad joke, but unfortunately this is no laughing matter. It is the FTC reaching back to bygone eras for help in getting money in its enforcement cases. Much virtual ink … Continue Reading

Made in USA, Part Three – Materials Not Available in the US

This is our third blog in a series that is examining potential ambiguities in the Federal Trade Commission’s (Commission) Made in USA (MUSA) guidance – ambiguities that become particularly more important now that MUSA claims in labeling are the subject of a new Commission, the violation of which can lead to civil penalties. Suppose a … Continue Reading

Auld Lang Syne 2021 – Significant Events of the Past Year

Another year has come and gone. There are many things one could reflect on, but this blog is about advertising and marketing law, so we’ll stick to that. To say it was an eventful year would be an understatement. So we asked four of our partners to each select two interesting developments from the year. … Continue Reading

Less to the FTC’s Notice of Penalty Offenses Than Meets the Eye?

The FTC’s Notice of Penalty Offenses concerning endorsements and testimonials is barely a week old and it’s likely already had its intended effect. Hundreds, if not more, of consumer products companies are taking a second or third look at their practices when it comes to endorsements and testimonials and are beefing up their training and … Continue Reading

The Latest FTC Policy Statement Sets Its Sights on Negative Option Marketing

Policy statements are neither rules nor notices of penalty offenses, but when the FTC issues a policy statement discussing an area that has been the subject of a lot of enforcement activity, it warrants serious attention, particularly when the press release discusses ramping up enforcement on “illegal dark patterns that trick or trap consumers.” That’s … Continue Reading

FTC Puts 700+ Companies on Notice to Expect to Pay Penalties for Any Endorsement Violations

By: Linda Goldstein, Amy Mudge, Randy Shaheen, Jack Ferry and Matt Renick The Federal Trade Commission (FTC or Commission) announced on Oct. 13 a widespread enforcement action against deceptive endorsement practices. The Commission sent a Notice of Penalty Offenses to more than 700 companies, notifying them that conduct related to fake or misleading endorsements and … Continue Reading

Slaughterhouse-Five: Myth-Busting with the Commissioner at NAD 2021

By Randal Shaheen and Matthew Renick To kick off the final day of the National Advertising Division’s (NAD) 2021 virtual conference last week, FTC Commissioner Rebecca Slaughter gave a keynote address laying out her views on consumer privacy and the digital data economy writ large. Specifically, Commissioner Slaughter sought to bust five myths about privacy … Continue Reading

NDI Letter Shows CBD’s Position Unchanged at FDA

The 2018 Farm Bill legalized hemp-derived cannabidiol (CBD) at the federal level, but in the nearly three years since then, little has changed from the perspective of the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA). From the start, FDA’s regulatory position has been complicated by CBD’s previous approval as the active ingredient in the prescription drug … Continue Reading

COVID-19 Consumer Protection Act Shows Alternative Path to Monetary Remedies

A recent Federal Trade Commission (FTC) action demonstrates how the FTC has pivoted toward enforcement actions based on specific acts of Congress and rules in light of the Supreme Court’s ruling in AMG Capital. Congress passed the COVID-19 Consumer Protection Act in December 2020, which made deceptive acts or practices involving the treatment, cure, prevention, … Continue Reading

Podcast: AD-ttorneys@law: The Future of Consumer Redress after Supremes Rule in AMG Capital Management v. FTC

In a highly anticipated recent Supreme Court decision in the case of AMG Capital Management v. FTC, the court ruled in favor of putting the brakes on consumer redress and the commission’s ability to protect consumers from unfair or deceptive practices in the marketplace. BakerHostetler partner Randy Shaheen discusses the ramifications. Questions and Comments: rshaheen@bakerlaw.com Listen … Continue Reading

Podcast: AD-ttorneys@law: False Advertising or Just Puffing?

Absolute truth in advertising is something of a rarity, but not every untrue statement is false advertising. In this episode, BakerHostetler partner Randy Shaheen is going to ply you with pointers on avoiding puffery’s promotional pitfalls and potential problems. Questions and Comments: rshaheen@bakerlaw.com Listen to the episode. Subscribe to BakerHosts Apple Podcast | Google Podcast | iHeartRadio | Spotify | Stitcher | TuneIn Download Episode Transcript… Continue Reading

Beware Operation CBDeceit

The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) announced on December 17 that it has taken action against six sellers of CBD products.  In case you need a refresher, CBD is a substance found in the cannabis plant that is widely touted for its health benefits.  The 2018 Farm Bill legalized hemp-derived CBD at the federal level, and … Continue Reading

Podcast: AD-ttorneys@law: CBD Marketing: A Path Through the Legal Fog

Being the best means continually building knowledge and pushing forward. And in a world of digital disruption, consumer marketers can’t afford to stumble. To navigate today’s most complex issues, thousands of subscribers read BakerHostetler’s AD-ttorneys@law weekly newsletter and blog and appreciate how the firm’s renowned team of advertising, marketing and digital media lawyers distills issues … Continue Reading

FTC Enforcement: What Is Equitable Relief?

All eyes remain on the Supreme Court and what, if any, changes the Court may make to the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC’s) authority to seek consumer redress. Will the Court strip the FTC of that authority entirely? The Third Circuit’s recent decision in an antitrust matter suggests so. The circuit court held Section 13(b) of … Continue Reading
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